Jay Cutler may get his wish of being reunited with Jeremy Bates.
Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that the Bears have contacted Bates, USC’s offensive coordinator, about Chicago’s vacant offensive coordinator job.
Cutler would be thrilled if Bates came to town. Bates was on Mike Shanahan’s staff in Denver when Cutler was the Broncos’ quarterback, and the two had a close enough relationship that when Shanahan was fired, Cutler said he’d ask to leave if Bates didn’t stick around. Bates didn’t stick around, and Cutler did, in fact, ask to leave.
The 33-year-old Bates, who played college football at Tennessee and then transferred to Rice, has also been an assistant with the Buccaneers and the Jets. His father, Jim Bates, was an NFL defensive coordinator.
Although big names including Charlie Weis and Mike Martz have been discussed, Bates is considered the leading candidate. The Bears are also apparently considering adding University of Minnesota offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch to their coaching staff.